Monday, February 28, 2011
Literally Throwing Away Money To Lose Weight.
A: No, I mean that literally. In an effort to lose poundage and body fat, I'm going to crumple up a dollar bill and throw it in the trash every time I drink a Coke or a sweet tea in the month of March. I also have to blog my justification out to you in blogosphere. (Just realized there are 31 days in March. Should have come up with this idea for February instead.)
Q: Do you think throwing away dollar bills will actually keep you from drinking Coke?
Yes. The idea of throwing away dollar bills makes me sick. I've done this before with throwing away pennies when I bit my nails and quarters when I'd spend too much time on ESPN.com, and it seemed to work. But I really love Coke and sweet tea, so I had to up the ante.
Q: Do you think your budget-crazed wife will dig through the trash to find the discarded money?
Yes. Therefore, I plan to occasionally plant empty Coke bottles in recycling, especially when the trash is full and has gross/smelly things in it. Marriage should be fun.
Q: Why not just put the money in a jar or donate it to Haiti or something.
That's what my wife said. But then I would end up trying to drink like 200 Cokes this month. No, for this to work, the dollar bills have to serve absolutely no purpose, which is what makes throwing them away so wretched.
Q: You know, you could just work out more.
On May 2, 2010, I weighed in at 190.4 pounds, and 20.2% body fat. Over the past 10 months, I've swam 43,525 meters (27 miles), biked 1,017.47 miles, and ran 247.1 miles. This averages out to swimming just under 3 miles, biking over a 100 miles, and running almost a marathon a month (also throw in basketball and weight lifting). This is low by triathlete standards, but should still count as an active lifestyle. This morning, February 28, I weighed in 191.2 pounds and 20.4% body fat. So, with all that, I still had a slight rise in weight/fat. If the problem isn't not being active enough, it has got to be diet.
Q: So you got nothing out of doing all training?
Actually, I got a lot. I've gotten a little faster in running, faster in biking, and a lot faster in swimming. I got to do the Ragnar Relay with several friends, and hopefully helped them get in better shape as well. My heart rate is down to 60, and my cholesterol is great. The only area that didn't improve is the weigh/body fat, which is why I'm trying this.
Q: Did you start this plan one day early in order to get a head start on success?
No. I got a sweet tea at the Chick-Fil-A drive through and got a Coke at lunch with a Dr. Pepper refill.
Q: I should ask- since you keep saying Coke, does that mean its OK to drink Pepsi?
First of all- yuck- Pepsi sucks. Secondly, I'm from Indiana, so "Coke" is what we call any type of sweet soft drink. I will get unsweet tea and probably some diet soft drinks, but as those don't taste as good I probably won't drink as much. To satisfy the craving, I may allow myself a Jolly Rancher (23 calories vs. 240 calories in a 20 oz Coke) after a meal.
Q: But isn't caffeine bad, too?
One of the best lessons I learned about dealing with addiction came from reading a Tom Clancy novel. In one of the later books that they didn't make into a Harrison Ford/Alec Baldwin movie (I'm intentionally ignoring the one they butchered starring Affleck), the main character, Jack Ryan, is so messed up by life that he become an alcoholic and chain-smoker. His wife/doctor realizes this, and tells him, "Jack, you need to stop drinking, and if you need to smoke, please do it outside." He realizes her wisdom in getting him to attack one addiction at a time, and just try to control the other (smoking). So, I'm trying to defeat this addiction, and control the other. One thing at a time.
Q: When will this hurt the most?
When I get Mexican or pizza or go to a movie. Coke tastes so good then.
Q: What inspired you to do this?
A big part was actually my wife. She hasn't run or really walked since we had our second daughter four years ago, and this year she just finished her second 5K and signed up for her third next month. If she can make herself get active again, the least I can do is to change one thing in my diet.
Q: What happens on April 1?
I probably will have Coke. I'm not trying to give them up forever. I think I'm just trying to show myself that I can handle this. I also want to test to see how much of an effect cutting out sweet drinks has on my weight and body fat and racing performance.
Q: Would you encourage other people to try this?
Yes, except instead of throwing away the money, they should send it to me instead since I gave them such an awesome idea.
Brian, thank you for taking the time to interview yourself today.
M: You're very welcome.
Audience participation: So, how many pounds or how much body fat do you think I'll lose in a month? Is this a stupid idea? How can I make it better?